Growth & Development

Town Council Delays Vote on Obey Creek

At their meeting last night, the Chapel Hill Town Council took public comment and discussed the Obey Creek development agreement, but delayed a vote on the proposal until next Monday.

The Council also discussed and enacted the 2015-16 budget and approved a revised personnel ordinance.

Public comment on Obey Creek centered around the issues that have long dominated the discussion: traffic, transit, and the size of the development. Council members seemed interested in delaying their vote a week due to new staff information, including smaller development scenario outcomes, that the Council received last Friday.

Tweets recapping last night's meeting are captured in the Storify below. Have thoughts about Obey Creek or the other items discussed? Add them in the comments.

What We're Reading: June 5

We read a lot of articles about local government, public sector innovation, open government, urban planning, and social justice. Since we often relate these articles to things happening locally here in Orange County and the Triangle, we thought we'd start sharing them from time to time. Here's what we read this week:

Tour of the Durham-Orange Light Rail Transit Corridor

[Cross-posted from damonseils.org.]

Today I took a tour of the Durham-Orange light rail transit (LRT) corridor, courtesy of Triangle Transit staff. We started at Triangle Transit headquarters in RTP, picked up a helpful if bulky set of maps and other materials, and made our way to the proposed western terminus of the LRT project in Chapel Hill. I used the event as opportunity to live-tweet the tour for local politics blog OrangePolitics (where this entry is cross-posted).

Below is an archive of my tweets from today's tour.

Do you have questions about the Durham-Orange LRT project? The next couple of public meetings will take place on June 4 (4:00-7:00 pm, Durham Station) and June 6 (2:00-5:00 pm, John Avery Boys & Girls Club). Attend a forum and/or find more information at ourtransitfuture.org.

Affordable Housing: Policy Tools & Best Practices

In its ongoing series on affordable housing, the Town of Chapel Hill hosted Michelle Winters, senior visiting fellow at the Urban Land Institute’s Terwilliger Center for Housing last Tuesday to talk about the policy tools and best practices for affordable and workforce housing.

Winters began her presentation discussing housing trends nationwide and specifically talked about the recent surge in renter households that is expected to continue into the future. The most important takeaway: Half of all renter households are at least moderately cost burdened, meaning they spend at least 30% of their income on rent. This statistic highlights why housing professionals have broadened their discussion of what affordable means in recent years to include a range, all the way from homelessness to just below market rate. As the town’s executive director for housing and community development, Loryn Clark, put it: housing needs to be affordable for everybody.

Community Meeting on Affordable Housing and Community Development Needs

The Orange County Department of Housing, Human Rights and Community Development invites the public to join the discussion and voice opinions about affordable housing and community development needs and how to eliminate barriers to fair housing choices.  

The meetings will be hosted by the Orange County HOME Consortium, which consists of the County and the Towns of Chapel Hill, Hillsborough and Carrboro.

The Orange County HOME Consortium and the Town of Chapel Hill are preparing the FY 2015-2019 Five Year Consolidated Plan and FY 2015 Annual Action Plan for use of Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and Home Investment Partnership (HOME) funds as required by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

In order to determine the most pressing needs and to develop effective strategies to meet those needs, HUD requires a Consolidated Plan.  By attending these meetings, the public can help to identify priority needs and strategies in the areas of affordable housing, homelessness, special needs and community development and how funds are to be received over the next five years to help address needs identified.  

The Plan details housing needs of very low income, low income and moderate-income families, and population groups with special needs in addition to outlining the strategies and plans for addressing those needs.  The Plan can also serve as a foundation for the development of a long-range, strategic affordable housing plan for the participating communities. 

As part of the public input and planning process, a survey is available online to obtain more public input in identifying the needs and ideas on how residents would like to see funds budgeted to address needs with CDBG and HOME funds received, as well as identifying and addressing any impediments to fair housing choice. 

Click on the link to take the confidential survey (en Español). 

For more information, please contact the Department of Housing, Human Rights and Community Development at 919.245.2490.

Date: 

Thursday, March 12, 2015 - 12:00pm to 3:00pm

Location: 

Seymour Senior Center (Auditorium), 2551 Homestead Road, Chapel Hill

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